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Appl Environ Microbiol ; 87(22): e0153221, 2021 10 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1494943


Effective disinfection technology to combat severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) can help reduce viral transmission during the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic and in the future. UV devices emitting UVC irradiation (200 to 280 nm) have proven to be effective for virus disinfection, but limited information is available for SARS-CoV-2 due to the safety requirements of testing, which is limited to biosafety level 3 (BSL3) laboratories. In this study, inactivation of SARS-CoV-2 in thin-film buffered aqueous solution (pH 7.4) was determined across UVC irradiation wavelengths of 222 to 282 nm from krypton chloride (KrCl*) excimers, a low-pressure mercury-vapor lamp, and two UVC light-emitting diodes. Our results show that all tested UVC devices can effectively inactivate SARS-CoV-2, among which the KrCl* excimer had the best disinfection performance (i.e., highest inactivation rate). The inactivation rate constants of SARS-CoV-2 across wavelengths are similar to those for murine hepatitis virus (MHV) from our previous investigation, suggesting that MHV can serve as a reliable surrogate of SARS-CoV-2 with a lower BSL requirement (BSL2) during UV disinfection tests. This study provides fundamental information on UVC's action on SARS-CoV-2 and guidance for achieving reliable disinfection performance with UVC devices. IMPORTANCE UV light is an effective tool to help stem the spread of respiratory viruses and protect public health in commercial, public, transportation, and health care settings. For effective use of UV, there is a need to determine the efficiency of different UV wavelengths in killing pathogens, specifically SARS-CoV-2, to support efforts to control the ongoing COVID-19 global pandemic and future coronavirus-caused respiratory virus pandemics. We found that SARS-CoV-2 can be inactivated effectively using a broad range of UVC wavelengths, and 222 nm provided the best disinfection performance. Interestingly, 222-nm irradiation has been found to be safe for human exposure up to thresholds that are beyond those effective for inactivating viruses. Therefore, applying UV light from KrCl* excimers in public spaces can effectively help reduce viral aerosol or surface-based transmissions.

Disinfection/methods , SARS-CoV-2/radiation effects , Virus Inactivation/radiation effects , Animals , Bacteriophage phi 6/radiation effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Coronavirus 229E, Human/radiation effects , Disinfection/instrumentation , Humans , Mice , Murine hepatitis virus/radiation effects , Ultraviolet Rays
Microbiol Spectr ; 9(2): e0053721, 2021 10 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1476396


UV light, more specifically UV-C light at a wavelength of 254 nm, is often used to disinfect surfaces, air, and liquids. In early 2020, at the cusp of the COVID-19 pandemic, UV light was identified as an efficient means of eliminating coronaviruses; however, the variability in published sensitivity data is evidence of the need for experimental rigor to accurately quantify the effectiveness of this technique. In the current study, reliable and reproducible UV techniques have been adopted, including accurate measurement of light intensity, consideration of fluid UV absorbance, and confirmation of uniform dose delivery, including dose verification using an established biological target (T1UV bacteriophage) and a resistant recombinant virus (baculovirus). The experimental results establish the UV sensitivity of SARS-CoV-2, HCoV-229E, HCoV-OC43, and mouse hepatitis virus (MHV) and highlight the potential for surrogate viruses for disinfection studies. All four coronaviruses were found to be easily inactivated by 254 nm irradiation, with UV sensitivities of 1.7, 1.8, 1.7, and 1.2 mJ/cm2/log10 reduction for SARS-CoV-2, HCoV-229E, HCoV-OC43, and MHV, respectively. Similar UV sensitivities for these species demonstrate the capacity for HCoV-OC43, HCoV-229E, and MHV to be considered surrogates for SARS-CoV-2 in UV-inactivation studies, greatly reducing hazards and simplifying procedures for future experimental studies. IMPORTANCE Disinfection of SARS-CoV-2 is of particular importance due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. UV-C irradiation is a compelling disinfection technique because it can be applied to surfaces, air, and water and is commonly used in drinking water and wastewater treatment facilities. UV inactivation depends on the dose received by an organism, regardless of the intensity of the light source or the optical properties of the medium in which it is suspended. The 254 nm irradiation sensitivity was accurately determined using benchmark methodology and a collimated beam apparatus for four coronaviruses (SARS-CoV-2, HCoV-229E, HCoV-OC43, and MHV), a surrogate indicator organism (T1UV), and a resistant recombinant virus (baculovirus vector). Considering the light distribution across the sample surface, the attenuation of light intensity with fluid depth, the optical absorbance of the fluid, and the sample uniformity due to mixing enable accurate measurement of the fundamental inactivation kinetics and UV sensitivity.

Coronavirus 229E, Human/radiation effects , Coronavirus OC43, Human/radiation effects , Murine hepatitis virus/radiation effects , SARS-CoV-2/radiation effects , Ultraviolet Rays , Animals , Baculoviridae/radiation effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Disinfection/methods , Humans , Vero Cells